AT THE start of what promises to be an eventful federal election year, candidates for the seat of Dawson are already on the campaign trail.
Greens party candidate Jonathon Dykyj was in Airlie Beach over the weekend, laying the ground-work for what he hopes will be a September/October election.
Mr Dykyj said he was keen to take on sitting MP George Christensen and the Abbott-led opposition about issues such as the Carbon Tax.
"It's as much a tax on the economy as speeding fines are on motorists. If you don't speed you don't get fined and if you don't pollute you don't pay the tax," he said.
"If Mr Christensen and the leader of the Opposition want to make it a referendum on that policy, I'm here to put forward the other side of the case."
Mr Dykyj said he believed the issues directly affecting the Whitsundays were things like health, education and the Bruce Highway. He also said he would be taking a keen interest in the problems with strata insurance "and taking it back to the party as well".
Mr Dykyj said he plans to visit each of the townships in the Dawson electorate at least once per month in the lead-up to the election, whenever it may be.
"I'm looking forward to getting out and getting the policies out there and hearing what people think," he said.
Standing against Mr Dykyj are incumbent MP George Christensen (LNP) and Labor candidate Bronwyn Taha.
Mr Christensen has confirmed he has been re-endorsed as the LNP's representative for Dawson and said the main issues in the Whitsudnays included funding for the Bruce Highway and a greater focus on tourism infrastructure.
Ms Taha, who was endorsed by the party in November 2012, said her campaign would be all about "listening to community members about what they really need in their community".
"And that's what I'm doing now," she said.
Ms Taha said there were lessons to be learned from the Newman Government's slashing of funds.
"We can't let history repeat itself with an Abbott Government," she said.
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